Amy Scott's Thoughts

Sharing the thoughts that bounce around in my brain!

California Adventures January 22, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 11:30 am

I’ve been a bit MIA lately. Thanks in part to our not so routine January. I’m now settling into what feels like a normal schedule and I’m ready to recount my many adventures of that last few weeks.  On Thursday the 10th, Jeremy and I boarded a plane bound for LA. It had been over 5 years since I had traveled by plane. I was thrilled to be at a place where I could actually travel again. I’ve been on road trips since having kids, but when it came to flying, I literally felt grounded. Jeremy was invited to be a part of a team of youth pastors and children’s pastors that met together to discuss books & ideas that will grow their leadership capacity. Part of this group experience was a trip to Southern California to visit churches and talk with their leadership about philosophies of ministry.  I wanted Jeremy to participate in this experience, but the the trip fell over my birthday weekend. I couldn’t handle the idea of Jeremy being in So Cal over my birthday weekend while I stayed home, so I invited myself along. Thankfully, the leaders of the trip agreed to let me come.

The best part of this trip was that I got to process these churches and meetings in person with Jeremy, instead of hearing the information secondhand. It was great to sit in a church gathering with my husband and then afterwards discuss our observations and what really stood to out to us from the conversations we had with the pastors. Our first stop on this adventure was Angelus Temple in LA. That night, we drove from LA to San Diego. In San Diego, we visited North Coast Church and New Break Church. I also tried Frisbee golf for the first time. Let’s just say I’m not going pro, but it wasn’t as bad as I had expected. Anything sportsy and I really don’t go together, but it’s amazing what you’ll do when you’re a part of a group (aka it wasn’t optional)…

Monday the 14th was my birthday and it was the day that the group was splitting up to head home. Instead of taking off for home, Jeremy and I picked up a rental car and drove to Old Town San Diego. We celebrated our honeymoon in San Diego 12 years ago and Jeremy has long dreamed of having tacos at this one restaurant he remembers vividly as having the best tacos ever. I had envisioned us eating in their courtyard just like did 12 years ago, smiling like newlyweds again… However, the weather had other plans. Our whole time in California was colder than I had expected (I froze). And it turned out to be wet too. My birthday was quite rainy. Without the palm trees around, I would have thought I was in Seattle and not So Cal. We still ate the restaurant we remembered, but we had to eat in their indoor seating area. It will still a great way to spend a birthday lunch before driving up to Anaheim. This was the big treat for my birthday! Once we arrived in Anaheim, we met up with one of my dearest friends for dinner. It was a great dinner and since time with this California friend is so rare, it was definitely a gift! And I was right by Disneyland… with plans to spend the entire at Disney the day after my birthday. 

Jeremy and I planned to make the most of our one Disney day. We got a park hopper ticket and started in California Adventure before they even let you into the ride areas. Throughout the day, we hopped parks multiple times, we hit many coincidental moments that let us ride on all the rides we had hoped for with relatively short wait times. I think our longest wait time was 25 minutes. It had been 8 years since I had visited these Disney parks and so many of the rides had been changed. It was great because they were still the rides I remembered, but with new tweaks that enhanced the experience. We walked to the parks in the rain that morning but thankfully the rain cleared up from about 9am-3pm. After 3pm, the rain started to move in more steadily. By the time we left the parks around 7:30pm, it was a full on downpour with flash flood warnings being issued. My original plan was stay at the park until 8pm when it closed, but so many things were already closed by 7:30pm that it seemed like a good time to leave. We put in a full day, we went on all the rides we wanted, ate really good food, went souvenir shopping. We did it all! We were completely soaked through by the time we got back to the hotel. Despite the rain, it was really fun to do the park with just Jeremy. We did Disney together 8 years ago, but it was with a group, so this time we got to do everything at our own pace. And without the kids, I wasn’t trying to keep an eye on anyone and make sure little legs were keeping up. We did all the roller coasters and rides that we don’t think the kids will be able to go on when we finally make it there with them. The weather also helped keep the crowds down. The parks weren’t empty, but they certainly weren’t crowded.

This was the longest I had been away from my boys and I missed them. It didn’t feel quite like my birthday without them helping me blow out the candles on my birthday cake. In fact, I didn’t blow out any candles on my birthday. The first day back I ran to Safeway and got a small cake, so I could celebrate with the kids.  It just needed to happen. More for me than for them, but I know they appreciated it!

Now after a busy weekend of lunches & dinner with friends, church and a morning at the dentist, I am ready to settle back into life at home. It feels so good to be back after a grand adventure. This trip was full of memories and I am so grateful for the opportunity I got to make them.  Now back to the real world!

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Leaving on a jet plane! 

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Trying something new… 

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Highlight of our time with the ministry group was having conversations with Larry Osborne in his inspiring home library. 

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Starting 33 off with one last walk at the beach in San Diego. 

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Birthday lunch in Old Town 

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This was where I had hoped we would be eating… those are some serious puddles!!! 

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Birthday dinner with my forever friend, Christa and her husband, John. 

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Morning at California Adventure

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Disneyland

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Taking a picture to share with the boys. 

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Thoroughly soaked from the walk back to the hotel. 

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The birthday void was filled. It’s just wasn’t a birthday without blowing out candles on a chocolate cake with these boys. 

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Lunch with my birthday month buddy and forever friend, Maggie. She is back in Washington so we can resume our lunch dates! What a blessing!!! 

 

 

A Not So Back to Routine January January 8, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 3:38 pm

I look forward to January every year. It’s my birthday month and yes, I am a firm believer in birthday month. Birthdays deserve a month long celebration, in my opinion. More than just birthday month, January is the start of a new year and a chance to get back to routine after the holidays. I thrive on routine and I always welcome January as a time to fine tune and get back on track.

This January, however, hasn’t played by the rules. We had one “normal” day where Jeremy went back to work, Owen went back to school, I had time at home alone with Graham and then we had church that evening. Yay January 2nd for being normal. The rest of the week unraveled from there (and I’m being a bit dramatic, because it hasn’t been bad at all, just different).

On January 3rd, I had a dentist appointment to replace the fillings on my bottom right side of my mouth. They were all ancient and one of them had been broken for longer than I can remember – over 5 years, for sure. I’ve had extreme dental anxiety and when the filling broke many moons ago, I stopped eating on that side of my mouth and the problem was “fixed.”  In November, an equally ancient filling broke on the left side of my mouth and now I felt I had to deal with situation.  So I went to the dentist for the first time in over a decade and finally pushed through my fears. The appointment went well and two additional appointments were made. The first to replace my old fillings on the right and the second to replace the fillings on the left. The broken filling on the right side was deep and the dentist was worried the tooth might react poorly and need a root canal. While I survived Thursday mornings fillings, I was sore afterward and worried that my tooth was like a bomb waiting to self-destruct. I think that I am in the clear now, but I am still cautious.  I’m prone to believing that the worst case scenario could happen any moment, so I have no trust with this tooth.  I’m glad that I was able to get over my fear and take care of my health. One of my close friends works at the dental office and was the hygienist who assisted me. She was so comforting and reassuring the entire time. She gave me a big hug when it was all over and then text messaged me the next day to check in and see how I was doing. Moments like that are what make being a part of a community so special. The right side of my mouth was the more challenging side, so when I go back in a couple weeks, I’m hoping it will be easy peasy in comparison.

After the great dental adventure of Thursday, we moved into the out of routine weekend. Jeremy was away Friday/Saturday at an overnight meeting with other children’s pastors. The boys got the opportunity to be bed bugs in my big bed. Graham eventually opted for his own bed, but Owen will never pass up the opportunity to sleep in my room. Saturday night into Sunday was a big wind storm that knocked out our power for over 10 hours. The power went out about midnight and Owen woke up instantly. He can’t sleep alone when the power goes out, so he moved into our room – after watching the storm with Jeremy for quite some time. Overall, I think Jeremy, Owen & I got about 4 hours of sleep before having to start the day. Jeremy got our generator hooked up to save our two fridges and chest freezer. Graham blissfully slept through the whole ordeal and woke up at 7:45am long after Jeremy and Owen took off for church. I stayed home to baby sit the generator and about 9:30am, Jeremy called me saying that Owen was a melty mess and needed to come home. Once the excitement of the morning had worn off, the kid was toast on his 4 hours of sleep.  The nice thing about having my parents as neighbors is they have a fancy generator that runs their whole house. Once Graham woke up, we went next door to a fully lit and heated home. My parents even helped refuel the generator at my house, so I felt very well taken care of.

As you can see, January has a bit wild for us. The rest of the month continues to be out of the norm for the next few weeks, I’ll share more of those details next time I post. My hope for January was to come into the new year with more focus and simplicity. I remember those early baby days when I had to scale back my life to survive. I felt like I was constantly shedding pieces of my old life so I could survive this new life with littles. The to-do lists became more basic, my schedule became more fluid and less full. There were growing pains through that season as I let go of things “I always had done” and started a new journey. Slowly the baby haze has faded and I’ve added more on to my plate. I was hungry to be an functioning adult again, to be productive again. And this served me well while we were building our house. I needed to stay busy and distracted.

In my last post, I talked about scaling back my Usborne Books & More business. I can already feel how taking one thing off my plate has given me more breathing room. Especially in my interactions with Graham. I still have commitments to prepare for and a household to run,  but I can see how slowing down allows me to be more in the moment. I can sit and play without feeling stressed about what I’m “not” right then. I can focus on making the moments more educational and our conversations more purposeful.  Counting, colors, letters are all things we talk about more. And with the start of our chore chart, I’m including both boys more in helping me around the house. Instead of racing to do chores around them, I’m trying to invite them to do the chores with me. They’ve also been given a list of responsibilities just for them.  Owen asked me what the prize was for doing his chores and I explained that everyone in our family has jobs to do and now he has a job too. He gets a roof over his head, clothes on his back and food to eat and we expect that he participates in family jobs. Later down the road, he’ll be able to do additional chores to earn money, but right now we’re starting with the basics.

I’ve had brief glimpses into a more focused and simplified life this month. It’s filled up heart and made me so happy to be present – doing something simple, but with focus, direction, purpose. It seems like a good way to start a new year. I’m optimistic for what the rest of the year holds.

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A picture of young Jeremy. Notice the resemblance? 

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Back to school with his new lunch box from Christmas. 

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Working on our letters. I used this UBAM sticker book with Owen too. Such a great resource! 

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Unloading the dishwasher

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Hello Chore Chart – I don’t expect each chore to be done daily, but they are so motivated right now that we are racking up the check marks! 

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Watching Mighty Pups in my bed while Daddy is out of town. 

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Hanging at the grandparent’s house while the power is out. 

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Excited for the power to be back on. Owen took my electric blanket and set himself up with it all by himself. Blanket thief! 

 

Good-Bye 2018 & Hello 2019 January 2, 2019

Filed under: Simply Me — Amy Scott @ 2:51 pm

Today is our first day back in the”real world” after two and a half weeks of vacation. I obviously took a vacation from blogging, so there is lots to share. Let’s start with Christmas plans.

Jeremy and I were talking about Christmas and how we’re glad that’s more than one day for our family. It keeps the whole season festive. There is always a bit of a Christmas letdown once all the gatherings are behind us, but the blessing of celebrating over a couple of weeks is that the journey is more fun then the actual destination. Getting to Christmas is just as special as Christmas itself. As a part of our Christmas gift to the boys, we went to Enchant in Seattle. Enchant was an amazing lighted Christmas maze. 9 reindeer were hidden through out the maze and you set off to find them. The maze was beautiful. Graham especially exclaimed at each reindeer we found and then gave them a hug. Owen got to go ice skating for the first time. And we had a chance to see Santa again and put in another request for a train. Jeremy and I have been looking for more ways to give experiences instead of “stuff” and Enchant was the perfect way to do something special as a family. Then we moved in to what I call the 5 days of Christmas. We did a Christmas gathering with my immediate family, a gathering with Jeremy’s extended family on Christmas Eve after attending the candlelight gathering at our downtown campus, Christmas day at GG’s house, day after Christmas shopping trip in Portland and last but not least, a Christmas gathering with the Scott clan. We had so much fun celebrating Christmas with so many loved ones. The moments we spend together as a family are what make Christmas truly special. We wrapped up our vacation and 2018 with a head colds. We did feel well enough to go to a birthday lunch with my sister and then celebrate with birthday dessert at our house for her and her husband. New Year’s Eve is always a celebration of April. We had a quiet evening around the house with the boys, put the kids to bed, watched the HGTV Dream House special and then went to bed before 9:30pm. That might be a record early bedtime for NYE.

As I reflect on 2018, I am amazed how each year can be so different. Looking back to 2015 & 2016, those were hard years. I blogged about those years saying I never wanted to repeat them. 2017 was a sad year for me. The longing for our own home and constantly being “in process but never there” took it’s toll on my heart. And now 2018… this is where things really started to pick up with the house. We got insulation and dry wall and taping and texturing and then painting and finishes all put into our house between January and March. It was busy and productive and each step made the house feel like a home. And then we moved in on March 31st. April through December has been a dream come true. Living in our own home and setting down roots has been so life giving. In May, we had an unexpected vacation to Bend, OR that felt like such a gift. That trip kicked off one of the best summer’s of my life in which my goal was to have as much fun with my kids as possible. Moving into the fall season, we celebrated the boys’ birthday and got to do so many of our favorite autumn traditions – I mean who doesn’t like to go to the pumpkin patch 3 times? And then our first Christmas season in our home! 2018 felt like a reprieve from a lot of hard and sad years. I don’t expect every year to be like 2018, but I am thankful for the blessings and many happy memories we made this year. I grew so much through the hard years – they were worth it. But after walking through what I have, it has made this year that much sweeter. 2018 has been a year of deep gratitude and contentment. Praise the Lord!!!

And on to 2019! I’m happy to announce that I am starting 2019 with a fully potty trained three year old. Something clicked and we’ve been accident free for weeks. I was super nervous that when we went to Enchant that Graham would get distracted and have an accident. Not only did he not have an accident, but he did all his business at the stadium. Never before have I viewed pooping in a public restroom to be a Christmas miracle, but that is totally what it was. The biggest bonus is Graham doesn’t like to use training toilets or toddler seats, so my bathrooms have no potty training paraphernalia in them. It’s a miracle!

Okay, now for 2019 resolutions. I’m not really one for resolutions because I’m a believer in if something needs to change, don’t wait till January, do it now. However, I do have some thoughts about 2019. My biggest goal is to go into Walmart less. I don’t plan on ceasing to shop there. I plan on using their grocery pick up this year. Our local Walmart doesn’t offer grocery pick up, but the Walmart up north next to Costco does. I plan to be more efficient and schedule grocery pick ups for the same time we plan to shop at Costco. This way we hit two major stores in one outing, but only have to go into one store. Since my kiddos are usually around for big outings like this, I am hoping to save sanity by going into less stores with them.  For the boys, we plan on starting a basic chore chart this month. Since today was our first day back to routine, I tested things out with Graham. He helped me take the garbage out, dust and make my class snack for church tonight. When he wasn’t helping me, he was playing with toys, practicing his letters with a new sticker book and working on coloring sheets. Part of my desire in stepping back from Usborne was to give Graham more focused and structured attention before he starts preschool this fall. We rocked day one! When Owen got home from school, both boys assisted me in unloading the dishwasher. Today definitely feels like a win!

I have more thoughts on 2019, but I will save them for next time. This is what happens when I don’t blog for two and a half weeks. I have too much to say. Until next time…

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Owen’s Christmas Program at Preschool 

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Enchant

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Ice Skating for the 1st time!

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Another chance to ask Santa for a train

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Vitzthum/Gallaway/Scott Christmas

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Christmas Eve Morning

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Candlelight Gathering at church 

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Christmas at GG’s house

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Christmas at GG’s house

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The best way to start 2019 – with more storage for toys and books! 

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Graham upgraded from 4 cubes to 8 cubes! I love organizational storage!!!

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The Scott Christmas Gathering

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Nana & Papa’s movie theater! The best way to eat a meal in peace! 

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My top 9 Instagram posts of 2018

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Celebrating April & Andrew’s birthdays

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Ending 2018 with snuggles and crazy eyes!